Hear East County Magazine’s interview with Tony Teora: http://kiwi6.com/file/xtdo52vum0 (new link)
By Trevor Hill and Miriam Raftery
May 23, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)- - In the 71st Assembly District encompassing most of East County, Republican Tony Teora is running against Republican incumbent Brian Jones.
There is no Democrat on the ballot (though Democrat Howard Katz has launched a write-in campaign). While Jones takes far-right conservative stances across the board, Teora takes a moderate position on fiscal issues and voices progressive views on social issues and climate change, providing a clear choice for voters.
A resident of Julian, Teora studied electrical engineering at Rutgers University in New Jersey. He is also a science-fiction author, a technology entrepreneur, and conducts computer work at Union Bank.
Teora entered the race against his party-mate, Brian Jones, because he believes that Sacramento needs more centrists like himself in order to accomplish any real work. He is running because he says he is tired of Jones’s staunch conservatism and straight party-line voting—factors he believes contributes to the gridlock in Sacramento seen in recent years.
“There are very few folks who are centrists who can cross party lines and use their brains nowadays,” Teora told East County Magazine in an interview last week on KNSJ radio. He said too many politicians are like “robots” automatically voting party lines.
Teora is confident that he can swing the Democratic vote along with some moderate Republicans and Libertarians who disagree with government intruding into people’s personal lives. One such issue is the debate over women’s right to have an abortion. “When it comes to pro choice, people have mixed fiscal conservatism with religious conservatism,” Teora stated, “I am not a pro lifer, I’m pro choice,” he said, though voiced opposition to late-term partial-birth abortions. Teora also sides with Democrats on gay rights, global climate change, and minimum wage.
Teora emphasized his support for science, faulting Jones for taking a climate change denial stance and for promoting an anti-climate change speaker who has been largely debunked, including falsely claiming to be a member of the British House of Lords.
Although Teora sides with conservatives and business owners in his position against excessive taxation, he does believe that when it’s impossible to fix a deficit with cuts, then taxes are an appropriate last resort. “Once we've cut, we've said ‘look, there’s nothing else we can cut here, we have to raise revenue,’ so how are you gonna do that?”
As a backcountry resident he wants to see strong fire protection, but opposes the state fire fee because it was imposed without approval by voters.
He also voiced concerns over soaring tuitions, took a moderate stance on immigration, but voiced support for 2nd Amendment gun rights.
Teora hopes to give incumbent Brian Jones a true run for his money this year in this heavily Republican district, appealing to fiscally responsible, socially progressive voters seeking to change politics-as-usual in Sacramento.
In order to learn more about Tony Teora, visit his candidacy webpage at http://tonyteora.org/ or his author webpage at http://www.tonyteora.com/.
You can also read his answers to the 2014 League of California Cities Legislative Candidate Questionnaire by using the following link: http://www.cacities.org/getattachment/e8705559-0580-42c5-bbd9-476d071c6056/Tony-Teora.aspx
Brian Jones has not yet responded to a request for an interview, however his campaign website may be viewed here: http://www.electbrianjones.com/
An ECM interview with Howard Katz will air next week.